Apple Poaches Dixons Boss John Browett To Head Retail Operation
Apple has announced that Dixons chief executive John Browett is to head its global retail operations. Former head Ron Johnson left last summer to take up a role at the US department store chain JC Penney.
“Our retail stores are all about customer service, and John shares that commitment like no one else we’ve met,” Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, said in a statement on Monday. “We are thrilled to have him join our team and bring his incredible retail experience to Apple.”
Browett, who has run the UK high street chain since 2007, will leave in April, handing over the reins to Sebastian James, the company's group operations director. Shares in Dixons fell more than 10% following the announcement, which came as a surprise to the market, but regained some of their value during the morning.
The company reported depressed sales in December, as it fell victim to the UK's high street slump, that has driven a number of retailers to the wall, however, it survived a brutal end to 2011 better than many.
Apple, on the other hand, shifted 37 million iPhones in the last quarter of last year, driving profit to $13.06bn (£8.4bn). Its retail outlets reported a 59% rise in revenues, to $6.1bn, and the company launched four new stores in the quarter.
|n a statement, Browett said:“Dixons Retail is a great business, and with the support of a very strong management team we have made excellent progress in transforming the Group into the leading customer focused specialist electrical retailer in its markets.
"The opportunity ahead of me is an exciting one and I leave knowing that the Group has a bright future under strong leadership.”
The company has said that its performance is in line with the modest expectations set in its January trading update.
James, Browett's successor, acknowledged the difficult task ahead, but said: While the economic backdrop in many of our markets remains challenging, our unswerving focus on the customer has put us in a very strong position.